Sustainable Agriculture

Coosaw Farms deeply cares about the future. We always have. As a family business, our daily decisions always include consideration of our environmental, economic, and social responsibilities. It’s just part of successful farming. Sustainability, in and of itself is an ever-evolving process of continuous improvement with a respectful eye on tomorrow. Matters that are important to you, are equally important to us. The following outlines some of the ways we practice sustainability today, while respecting the needs of our shared ‘tomorrow’.

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Diversification of Crops (Blueberries, Watermelon, Asian Cabbage, & Grains)

- Crop diversity helps spread economic risk, therefore enabling better financial stability amidst the high levels of risk that are a constant in farming.
- Annual Crop Rotation (Watermelon, Cabbage, Grains, Sorghum, & Vetch
- Crop rotation helps suppress weeds, pathogens, and insect pests; particularly critical for watermelons.
- Cover crops have stabilizing effects on the agroecosystem by holding soil and nutrients in place, conserving soil moisture and soil water holding capacity.
- We carefully select certain cover crop species to contribute a natural protection against soil-born diseases while also depositing valuable natural minerals. This reduces the need for both chemical inputs and costly manufactured fertilizers, therefore benefiting you and the environment.

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Precision-based Soil, Water, and Nutrient Management

- We farm on the principle that healthy, vigorous plants are less susceptible to diseases and pests, therefore reducing the need for chemical inputs. This benefits both you and the environment.
- Soil sampling analysis enables ‘just the right amount’ of preplant soil inputs, reducing wasteful applications.
- Soil-based water monitoring systems and controlled drip irrigation technology enable us to deploy ‘just the right amount’ of water with benefits of both plant vigor and water conservation.
- Weekly plant tissue analysis enables us to apply ‘just the right amount’ of plant nutrient replenishment, reducing wasteful fertilization while maintaining healthy plants and optimal quality for harvest.

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The water sensor above communicates water absorption at different depths. We then are able to irrigate with the exact amount of water the root system is needing without excess. Therefore accounting for all the different factors impacting water from natural rain events to high evapotranspiration.

Embracing Innovation & Research

- We are in constant collaboration with researchers, including ongoing on-farm research with Clemson University in discovering improved growing methodologies and conservation.
- Our company culture embraces advancing technologies (we even invent them) and makes annual investments back into the company for continuous improvement and deployment of smart innovation for cost savings, efficiency, and improved crop quality.

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Valuing our Employees

- Utmost integrity in HR management includes documentation verification on all of our employees and an Open Door Policy where all employees enjoy access to company owners for addressing any issue, at any time.
- Coosaw Farms employees earn above-market wages, much beyond the federal minimum wage. We are also regularly audited by US DOL Wage & Hour (who checks our employment and compensation practices).
- We are constantly thinking out-of-the-box for innovations in ergonomic aids for harvesting and packing
- Continuous farm, field and food safety training ensures a team-based culture of safety, quality, and growing excellence. 

Supporting Philanthropy & Feeding the Hungry

Nothing is wasted at Coosaw Farms. We are in a wonderful partnership with Food Banks & service organizations that help make sure none of the fruit or vegetables that we grow go to waste. Trucks pick up here at the farm and deliver across the United States to places of need.

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Recycling & Conservation

- Coosaw Farms has an active recycling program throughout the farm, packinghouse, and office that includes plastics, metal, packaging, and office paper.
- Coosaw Farms carefully levels its fields to a degreed plane before crop cultivation and follows with GPS technology to build and shape precise rows. This enables optimal drainage and the capability for rain water recapture through channeled flow.
- Carefully planned networks of ditches and trenches capture water used in frost protection for our blueberries while also establishing reservoirs for collecting rain water throughout the year.

Protecting the Consumer

- We exercise active implementation of Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), SOPs, and SSOPs for effective and accountable Food Safety, traceability, and COOL.
- Every Coosaw Farms watermelon is washed and sanitized.
- Crop inputs are carefully selected and always applied according to label.
- Residue analysis is conducted regularly to ensure zero residue on shipped product.
- Employees are taught to always observe good hygiene practices.
- COOL compliance and traceability is documented and practiced.

As a family farm, passion and compassion are deeply rooted in our philosophy. Sustainability surrounds all that we do every day. We take immense pride in our occupational calling to be responsible stewards of the land. You can always be sure every bite of Coosaw’s fresh produce encapsulates hours of thoughtful hard work, purposed dedication to the intricacies in every step, and a commitment that drives us to always be about ‘growing excellence’.